Knots to Know: Cleat hitch
A secure and reliable knot frequently used by boaters, the cleat hitch can secure a line to a cleat and be untied even under load. It’s useful for attaching your boat to a dock or a mooring ball or to tie off an anchor rode.
To tie a cleat hitch
- If possible, start with the cleat between you and what the line is pulling: your boat if you’re on the dock, or the dock if you’re on your boat.
- Wrap the line under the horn farthest from the load to take the stress off the line and make a partial turn around the base.
- Come over the top of the other horn, cross under the first horn and back over to make a figure eight.
- Finish with a locking loop flipped away from, not toward, the entering line, or standing end. To prevent a tripping hazard, form a Flemish coil with the bitter end.
To untie the cleat hitch, undo the locking loop and slide the line off the cleat.
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More knots to know
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